Students at Fast Track High Performance Driving School don't need to prove that they can parallel park—they're more concerned about taking a turn at more than 100 miles per hour. Most of them have never even felt the rumble of a 600-horsepower engine before. After plenty of safety debriefing from expert instructors, however, they usually are no longer intimidated by its purr. They'll then hop into the vibrant shell of an ARCA-style stock car, a former racing vehicle that's still capable of rocketing down the track at a blur-inducing speed of 165 miles per hour.
Since 1989, the school has been fulfilling speed-demon fantasies with its courses and ride alongs at racetracks throughout the country. The staff meets with everyday fans and aspiring competitors alike to cover racing protocol, safety, and appropriate postrace dance moves. Depending on the depth of their lesson, pupils might take the wheel during a four-car passing exercise or simply sit back in the passenger seat as a professional flies through three–five laps.
John and Melissa Wood draw on their respective Master of Art Education and Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees to train artists visiting their Unchartered Creativity studio. Intimate classes are offered to students of all skill levels in media ranging from wood burning and charcoal portraiture to still life drawing and painting. John and Melissa are always available during these lessons for personal coaching on techniques such as perspective and shading.
Within the art-adorned walls of A Toast To Art, affable art lovers blend swanky parties with creative painting projects in BYOB classes every weekend. With a "come as you are," no-dress-code-required attitude, the night is sure to be the perfect situation for unleashing artistic talent and adding your own flair to the instructor-led masterpiece you'll be creating. At evening's end, participants get to take home their creation along with the new-found painting skills they need for practicing still-lifes.
Before she'd ever considered starting her own studio, Design N Unwind's owner found herself in an unfamiliar place: an art class. With a paintbrush in one hand and a glass of wine in the other, she realized that not only was it fun to explore her creative side, but that she wanted to share that experience with others. So, instead of renting a stretch of billboards and letting hitchhikers doodle on them, she established Design N Unwind. There, themed classes put students in charge of painting with simple, step-by-step instructions that can be followed by anyone, regardless of whether they've practiced art before or not. Throughout the week, the studio plays host to public and private events, such as live jazz Sundays and bachelorette parties, as well as classes for kids and teens.